SCGC Euro-meetup

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    • #2992
      Daniel
      Participant

      My family and I had a lovely time hosting for a day Bill and Irene Keener a few weeks ago.

      We brought them to Chamouille for a BIG French lunch.  (No one wanted dinner later) and then went ten miles further on to visit Laon.

      Bill & my kids in front of La Cathédral de Notre Dame de Laon

      Walking up to the catherdral with Gisèle (holding the camera), Irene (right), and Rémy (front). I think I was pointing out the oxen figures on the towers.  They were added in gratitude for all their work hauling the stone from the surrounding villages and up the rather steep 115m (about 380ft) incline to the top of the town.

      Next year the house will be sorted.  (And I’ll be too broke to travel!) If you want a SCGC Euro-meetup, we’re in a good place for it.

      There’s some space here, cheap hotels nearby, loads to see and do.  We could jam in picturesque surroundings or former dungeons, or both!

      Daniel


    • #2993
      Old 97
      Participant

      I hope Darie and I can make it for her 50th birthday in 2020. Looks amazing.

    • #2994
      Chrisakadigdog
      Participant

      A gathering in Europe sounds wonderful .  AWSOME CATHEDRAL.

    • #2995
      Daniel
      Participant

      Laon is quite small and not so well known as Reims.  But the cathedral here served as the model for both the Reims and Paris cathedrals.  Laon was fairly significantly behind German lines in both world wars.  So there’s less damage to this cathedral than the one in Reims.
      Hitler visited here during WW2, apparently his unit served here in WW1.  I have seen a photo of him walking in front of the face of the cathedral (left to right if he were in the photo above).  It’s a bit weird to be in a place where he has been.  A disquieting feeling for an American.

      Matt, you and Darie are welcome as soon as the bathrooms are done, the water heater has been replaced, and the furnace is back on.  🙂

      Daniel


      • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by Daniel.
      • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by Daniel.
    • #2997
      Hank
      Participant

      Are the Florida members of the Forum also invited ?

      Daniel,I feel your pain vis a vie (a little French lingo there) home repairs. i just got hit with $17-20 K to replace all duct work and HVAC system in our house…..has to be done, but is playing Hell with my Ocean Blue FTC budget.

      May have to hold off for a year …..


      1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
      2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
      2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
      2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
      2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
      2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
      2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
      Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
      The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.

    • #2998
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      Hoping to make it there in 2020 as well.

       

    • #2999
      Old 97
      Participant

      Zorro, I have a deferred maintenance fund for just such occurrences. It is off limits for guitars purchases.

    • #3000
      tadol
      Moderator

      That looks incredible Daniel!  I just took my first trip to europe last year, going to the Cremona Music Festival with my wife, and Bruce Sexauer and his wife. Had an incredible time traveling through northern Italy, and we’ve planned on another trip, to Spain, in October next year. May have to take an extra couple days to see how we’d get to France and say hi –

      If we can organize a European meet-up, I’d sure enjoy trying to take part.

    • #3062
      Daniel
      Participant

      Well, phew!
      The move went well, but it took too much effort to get the external insulation guys to finish up.

      Also, the water heater and furnace both took longer than estimated to replace.  (I am not looking forward to that bill.  This was an unexpected expense.)  But as of yesterday we have both hot water and heat.  The EWI and the new windows are working like charms.  The house is warm & toasty.  No mean feat for the 1949 built large French house.

      Kitchen and new bathroom are in as well.  So we can bathe properly.  (After the weekend I just had, this is a big deal.) One more bathroom needs to be refitted.  It was a re-purposed room I am suspicious of.  I think the shower has been leaking into the floor for a while.  There are rotted floorboards in an adjacent cupboard and stains on the ceiling in the dining room below.  So no showers there until it’s sorted.

      As a small joke we are going to call it Manoir de Breuil.  (“Manoir” is a large house rather than a “chateau” which is equivalent to a castle. Though Chateau de Breuil sounds better.  “Breuil is pronounced ‘bruoy’.)

      C and I stayed in a local cheapie hotel for one night last week.  I would not recommend Premier Classe in Laon.  We stayed in a no-smoking room and the smell of cigarette smoke wafted into our room all night.  Really unpleasant, and not much sleep.

      Y’all are welcome, zorro!

      I don’t know if we’ll have enough space for everyone.  But there are local hotels.  Look up Laon on Air BnB.  There are also gites, hereabouts.  Gites are self serve accommodations, like Air BnB but more official here in France.

      We should start talking dates if there are enough takers.

      Daniel


    • #3096
      Matt Hayden
      Participant

      We’ll bring a tent 😉

    • #3161
      Bill Keener
      Participant

      I’ve been waiting for a couple of weeks to gather my words in order to to properly reply or comment.  I now know that I can’t garner the proper words to sufficiently either describe the day or thank Daniel and his beautiful wife for hosting us.

      So, I just say that we are a lucky couple, Irene and I.  We’re not wealthy.  But we are pleased to use on travel whatever  “spendable income” fall in our direction.  And, primarily we enjoy  annual or semi-annual jaunts to Europe.

      I can, without doubt, write that this visit was the high spot of our otherwise lovely almost month-long trip to Belgium and France this year. In fact, it was likely one of the best days of many trips passed.

      Not that I could, but if I DID misplace my memory of Daniel’s gracious and historic professorial travel and touring from Reims to his home and back, the fine time we spent at the cathedral, the gorgeous “lunch”  (in quotes on purpose…it was a feast…in the true sense of the word) prepared by his better half, or the pleasure of holding his fabulous mandolin; or if  I idiotically discounted the sights and smells of the French countryside;  or if I put out of my mind the finish of the sumptuous and authentic French meal with baked goods from the short walk with the kids across the lane from his (now previous) home, I’d  have to tell you that Daniel is a wealthy man.

      Sure, he’s gifted musically.  As is his bride.  And, of course, he’s an encyclopedia of knowledge with an ability to teach that does not offend even intellectual pedestrians such as myself.

      I’m pretty sure those aside from any of those attributes or any of their material assets,  Daniel would agree that the pedestal I appropriately place him on has been constructed by one of the most wonderful families in existence.  Certainly, that  I have ever met.  And, I’m sure Daniel has something to do with their virtues as well…(joke).

      Okay.  I gush. And I mean every overly-floral word.

       

      Thank you, Nesterlodes.  Our door is always open to your bright and shining family.

       

      Bill and Irene


      Bill “Magwa” Keener
      Coarsegold, California

    • #3164
      Bill Keener
      Participant

      N-e-s-t-l-e-r-0-d-e…Jeeze!  I’ve been consistently my bros name wrong for over twenty years now. He forgives me.

       


      Bill “Magwa” Keener
      Coarsegold, California

    • #3166
      Bill Keener
      Participant

      The Family 1


      Bill “Magwa” Keener
      Coarsegold, California

    • #3168
      Bill Keener
      Participant

      Feast


      Bill “Magwa” Keener
      Coarsegold, California

    • #3170
      Bill Keener
      Participant

      The Hugs


      Bill “Magwa” Keener
      Coarsegold, California

    • #3199
      Daniel
      Participant

      Ahh, Bill.

      I am indeed a wealthy man.  And bloody lucky.  It’s also nice to have such wonderful and appreciative friends, and to get to show them around Laon.  (First thought of those photos: “That’s a LOT of meat!”  Second thought: “My kids do like their hugs.”)

      Laon is a special place.  Parisians sniff and look down their noses at this town and the surrounding villages.  But when fortification for a capital city was necessary, Laon was the capitol.  Not Paris.  You can’t throw rock without hitting something ancient and significant, and the rock itself was probably part of a wall or a street dating back 1000 years.

      Hell I practice in a 16th century fortress with 3 foot thick internal walls!

      The reparations and adjustments to Manoir de Breuil proceed.  We have some plumbing issues to resolve before tackling the ‘salle d’eau’ (shower room) and addressing repairs to any damaged joists and floor boards.

      I don’t know if this is French plumbing practice or just bad plumbing in this house…  But the SVP lacks an upper vent.  So after about 4 flushes within a 6 hour period, the big ‘ol drain pipe up on the top floor suffers from equalised pressure and backs up!  Getting a new toilet and SVP tomorrow.

      The kitchen drain (original to the house) was laid without a steep enough drop to the inspection hatch.  So it backs up easily.  We’re having that routed tomorrow and hoping a clean pipe is enough of a fix.  Otherwise it’ll require ground works!  (eek!)

      Then… then… then… we’ll layout some real cash to have the shower room done properly.  At that point we’ll have two showers on the first floor and toilets on every floor.  When I have a completion date for the shower room Claudine and I will discuss dates for the guitar festival.

      She’s totally on board!  We’re looking at room arrangements to maximise bed space.  I’ll be able to estimate short term guest capacity then.

      Daniel (up here listening to the rain in the roof lights)


    • #3200
      Chrisakadigdog
      Participant

      Nice looking plate of food Daniel. And great photos,  Good-luck with those plumbing issues.

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